Man On Fire (1987)

Former CIA operative and mercenary John Creasy is burned out from a life full of death and violence. Paralyzed by memories of his past, he is barely working as a private bodyguard. However, a friend tells him about an easy ‘babysitting’ job in Italy where recent kidnappings of foreign businessmen’s children have been on the rise.

Creasy accepts the seemingly simple, if not mundane job, as bodyguard and chauffeur to twelve-year-old Samantha, a precocious girl with an interest in books, sports and learning about her new ‘friend’. Creasy prefers to keep things professional. While he’s initially hesitant to open up, he eventually begins to fill a paternal role in the young girl’s life, left vacant by her always absent father. Even Sam’s mother, feeling abandoned by her husband, seeks comfort in Creasy’s arms, but comfort is not his business.

The relationship between Sam and Creasy grows deeper, but as he allows himself to be more human, he loses his edge. While returning home from a party, their car is ambushed. Sam is abducted and Creasy, having been shot five times, is left for dead. But he’s not. After a period of rehabilitation and information gathering, Creasy finds the kidnappers. He tracks down those involved one by one, and eliminates them -- always hoping the next clue will lead him to Sam.

Scott Glen
Jade Malle
Joe Pesci
Élie Chouraqui